Fast forward a few months to last Monday when out of nowhere I got a call back letting us know that one of the classes had a spot open up and GRACE WAS IN! It was the best call I’ve received in a long time. :)
The co-op has everything we’ve envisioned for Gracie’s early childhood education since we started discussing pre-k around her first birthday. The school is fun and colorful and full of life. In her pre-k group she will be exposed to self-selection play, group music, arts and crafts, small/big group reading, Spanish lessons and will follow a multi-cultural inclusive curriculum. The preschool cooperative uses, “The Creative Curriculum” as a guide, which I love because it will enhance the Bean’s physical, motor, language, literacy, social, emotional and creative development! Pretty awesome, right! The teachers are great too and so supportive of our family structure making sure to always speak to both Georgia and I as they would any other set of parents. There’s even a Lesbian teacher on staff who has been with the preschool cooperative for 17 years. She introduced herself to us when we went to orientation last week mentioning that she heard that the school had a new two mom family joining the group and was really excited to meet us. I thought it was a very sweet gesture. Our very own gay mom welcome! Talk about making someone feel right at home.
Grace will attend half-day, three days a week because while we’re excited to give her a head start in school, she’s still our baby and we’re not quite ready to hand her over full-time to anyone aside from family quite yet. That may be an option when she enters the 3-4 year old group but for now, 12 hours a week is perfect!
The things I’m looking forward to the most are the field trips, our monthly volunteer days, getting to hang our gal’s art projects on the refrigerator and seeing her interact with the school’s animals. There’s an interactive chicken coop where the Bean will be able to feed the chickens and bring eggs home to us on a bi-weekly basis. According to the teachers, the chickens love cheese sticks and so does Grace so I’m sure they’ll hit it off. There is also a big fish tank full of all sorts of different fish. Grace is already convinced that she’s going to find Nemo in there, or so she says. ;)
I am nervous to send her off because she’s never been with anyone besides us for an extended period of time before. I hope all the kids are nice to her and that she shares and treats her fellow classmates like she would want to be treated. I hope she eats her lunch that I’m so excited to pack for her each week and most importantly, I hope she learns a ton! This is such a big step for her and for us and it’s wonderful and scary all at the same time. Wednesday's her first day so I’ll keep you all posted on how week one goes. Wish us luck!
I’ll leave you with a few more pictures of today’s co-op open house.
This was the last picture taken today as we were leaving. The Bean did NOT want to leave so when we finally got her outside she marched right over to the school’s garden to mope… Two year olds, gotta love’em. ;)